“Cannot” implies “not ought”

Philosophical Studies 130 (2):233 - 246 (2004)
I argue for a version of “ought” implies “can”. In particular, I argue that it is necessarily true that if an agent, S, ultima facie ought to do A at T’, then there is a time T* such that S can at T* do A at T’. In support of this principle, I have argued that without it, we cannot explain how it is that, in cases where agents cannot do the best thing, they often ought to do some alternative action – such as get help or do the promised action later; nor can we explain the phenomenon of necessary enablers or the phenomenon of more stringent prima facie obligations overriding less stringent ones in cases where the agent cannot fulfill both.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy   Epistemology   Logic   Philosophy of Mind   Philosophy of Religion
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Reprint years 2006
DOI 10.1007/s11098-004-4511-z
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References found in this work BETA
The Right and the Good.W. D. Ross - 1930 - Clarendon Press.
Doxastic Compatibilism and the Ethics of Belief.Sharon Ryan - 2003 - Philosophical Studies 114 (1-2):47-79.
Philosophical Studies.George Edward Moore - 1922 - Routledge and Kegan Paul.

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Reasons, Impossibility and Efficient Steps: Reply to Heuer.Bart Streumer - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 151 (1):79 - 86.

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